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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract - Bioremediation and Biodegradation

Optimization of Biomixture Composition and Water Management for Maximum Pesticide Dissipation in Peat-Free Biobeds


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 41 No. 6, p. 1787-1795
    Received: Mar 3, 2012
    Published: October 16, 2012

    * Corresponding author(s): dkarpouzas@bio.uth.gr
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  1. Evangelos Karanasiosa,
  2. Asimina Papadi-Psylloua,
  3. Dimitrios G. Karpouzas *b and
  4. Nikolaos G. Tsiropoulos *a
  1. a Dep. of Agriculture, Crop Production and Rural Environment, Univ. of Thessaly, Nea Ionia– Volos 38446, Greece
    b Dep. of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, Univ. of Thessaly, Ploutonos 26 and Aiolou Str., Larisa 41221, Greece. Assigned to Associate Editor César Plaza


Biomixture composition and water management are key factors controlling biobeds performance. Although compost-biomixtures (BXs) possess high degradation efficiency, their low water-holding capacity compared with peat-biomixtures (OBX) limits their use. Thus, appropriate water management is required to optimize their performance. The dissipation capacity of selected BXs compared with OBXs was assessed in a column study under two water managements not differing in their total water load but in the intensity and frequency of water addition. Results showed that the less frequent application of large water volumes (water management scenario I) facilitated pesticide leaching (0.001–10.4% of initially applied), compared with the frequent application of low water volumes (water management scenario II) where leaching losses were always <1%. Water management affected differently the dissipation performance of substrates: OBX outperformed BXs under water management scenario I, whereas the grape marc compost-biomixture (BX1) was superior at water management scenario II. Substitution of grape marc compost (C1) with olive leaves compost (C2) or of straw with corn cobs or grape stalks reduced the dissipation capacity of BX1. Mass balance analysis revealed that the high dissipation capacity of OBX was mostly attributable to its high ability to retain rather than degrade pesticides, whereas the exact opposite was seen for BX1. Overall, our findings suggest that BXs-biobeds could treat large wastewater volumes under appropriate water management that extends the contact period between pesticides and BXs, thus exploiting their high biodegradation capacity.

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Copyright © 2012. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.